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Jarrod Jacobs: Calling On The Name of the Lord

I am sure that our readers have heard people say words to the effect, “All you need to do is call upon the name of the Lord, and you can be saved.” Some will tell you to pray and say, “Lord, be merciful to me a sinner,” or similar things. This teaching is a misapplication of Romans 10:13. Yet, what does it mean to call upon the name of the Lord? Let us read Romans 10:13-17.

“For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach, except they be sent? As it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things! But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Esaias saith, Lord, who hath believed our report? So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”

Please notice that after the apostle Paul says we must call upon the name of the Lord, he asks a series of questions that show what it means to call upon the name of the Lord. According to Romans 10, to call upon the name of the Lord, we must:

1) Hear the gospel (v. 14).

2) Believe the gospel (v. 14).

3) Obey the gospel (v. 16).

Therefore, calling upon the name of the Lord is a comprehensive thing, not simply saying the word, “Lord.” In Acts 2:21, the same thing is taught by the apostle Peter. Like Paul, Peter told folks, “And it shall come to pass that everyone who calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved” (Acts 2:21).

What did he mean? As we read Acts 2, we see that they were told to do something similar to what was said in Romans 10:13-17. Peter began by telling those people to “hear” (Acts 2:22). Peter then proved that Jesus truly is the Son of God (v. 23-35), and said, “Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God has made that same Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ” (Acts 2:36). Please note that to “know assuredly” is to believe. As we continue to read, we see that when the people asked what they needed to do to be forgiven of murdering the Son of God, Peter answered, “Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins .... Then they that gladly received his word were baptized...” (Acts 2:38-41).

Peter’s teaching was no different than Paul’s in Romans 10. In Acts 2, we see that in order to “call upon the name of the Lord”, those people had to:

1) Hear the gospel (v. 22).

2. Believe the gospel (v. 36).

3. Obey the gospel (v. 38).

Therefore, anytime one calls upon the name of the Lord, he is not saying “Lord save me,” or the like. One calling upon the name of the Lord is simply obeying God’s plan of salvation! In fact, the apostle Paul did this very thing, himself (Acts 22:16). His arising to be baptized and wash away his sins resulted in his “calling on the name of the Lord”!

Let us call upon the name of the Lord as the Bible directs so that we might be saved before it is too late (II Pet. 3:9; II Cor. 6:2)!

-- You are invited to visit with the Caneyville church of Christ. Times of services: Sun.: 10:00 am, 10:45 am, 5:00 pm; Wed.: 7:00 pm. Website: Tune in to our radio program 101.5 FM at 5:30 am, Mon-Fri. Questions? Call: (270) 589-4167


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